My daughter and I have been digging in to the world of Andi and her pals, with these Circle C Stepping Stones books written by Susan K. Marlow and published by Kregel Publications. We received the first two books, Andi Saddles Up and Andi Under The Big Top, in return for our honest review.
The first in the series, Andi Saddles Up, takes the reader back in time to the Circle C Ranch during the year of 1877. The book introduces nine year old Andrea Carter, on her birthday. Andi is extremely excited, given that it is not only her birthday but that she is also now old enough to ride Taffy, her beloved horse.
Andi dreams of learning to trick ride, just like her friend Riley always used to do, but her big brother Chad simply won't hear of it. Chad has been the man around the farm since their father passed away.
Andi goes on to meet a new friend, Sadie, but Sadie's Pa is in a land boundary dispute with Chad and things are very tricky. Can Andi and Sadie continue to be friends?
Whilst they aren't in abundance the illustrations that are contained in the novel are beautiful hand drawn sketches and just add that little extra to the story.
This story contains some wonderful life lessons and Andi certainly learns some hard and painful ones throughout the story.
It's a great one to read together, that's for sure, as both adults and children alike can take something away from this. My daughter read this aloud to me a little each day and after each reading we moved to the free printable study guide that is available on the Kregel Publications website.
The study guide includes chapter comprehension questions, vocabulary word practice, crosswords, poetry writing activities, character activities and more. It was a good way to extend on the reading.
If you have a daughter that loves horses and farm life then she is sure to enjoy getting in to this adventure with Andi.
We also received the second book in the Circle C Stepping Stones series, Andi Under The Big Top.
It's summer on the Circle C Ranch and the circus is coming to town. One needs to remember that it is the year 1877 and having something like a circus arrive in town with all of those exotic animals really is a big deal!.
As you can imagine Andi is brimming with excitement to get along to the circus and to watch the show. She is somewhat wary of the clowns but goes on to thoroughly enjoy the circus.
Whilst there she meets a young boy, name Henry Jackson, who has run away and joined the circus. It seems like it is everyone's dream, to run away and join the circus doesn't it? But is Henry really loving his life? There is much more to his story than first appears.
Andi decides that she needs to help her new friend but at what cost?
Again this installment brings many life lessons. Can Andi really help Henry to find his way back home?
Once again there are a few beautiful illustrations scattered throughout the book and a free study guide is also available to download.
My daughter is slightly above the recommended age range for these books and we did notice at times that they were probably on the young side for her. We did notice on the website though that there are other series following Andi as she grows up so we will take a closer look at those.
Overall we both enjoyed these, although felt Andi Saddles Up grabbed our attention more.
If you would like to read further reviews of these books by other Homeschool Review Crew members simply click on the graphic below.
You can also find more details about this series via Susan K. Marlow's facebook page.
I trust this review has helped you to learn a little more about the Circle C Stepping Stones range.